Black Coffee (born Nkosinathi Maphumulo on 11 March 1976) is a South African multi award winning record producer and DJ. Black Coffee began his career back in 1994 and has released four albums and one live DVD under his Johannesburg based record label called Soulistic Music. He is arguably one of the most influential musicians in Africa. Black Coffee got his big break shortly after being chosen as a South African participant in the 2004 Red Bull Music Academy held in Cape Town. Personal life: Black Coffee, was born in eThekwini, South Africa on 11 March 1976, and grew up in Mthatha, Eastern Cape.
On 13 May 2011 he married Actress and TV Presenter Mbali Mlotshwa. Early career: Maphumulo majored in Jazz Studies at Technikon Natal before working as a backup singer for Madala Kunene together with then schoolmates Mnqobi Mdabe (Shota) and Thandukwazi Sikhosana (Demor). Black Coffee, Shota and Demor later formed an Afro-pop trio called SHANA short for Simply Hot and Naturally African which was signed under Melt 2000 then headed by Robert Trunz. Black Coffee was chosen as one of two South African participants in the Red Bull Music Academy in 2003 jump-starting him into the South African dance music scene - a decision he has never looked back on. His first big break was when his song "Happiness" was featured on the DJs at Work album. Music career: 2005-2006: Black Coffee: In 2005 he launched his career with a remix of Hugh Masekela's 1972 hit Stimela. Later that year he released his self-titled debut album under his Johannesburg based record label Soulistic Music, Black Coffee's wholly owned corporate structure, his team's home base and the jump-off point for himself, and as time has evidenced for many others too.
The album featured collaborations with the likes of Thandiswa Mazwai, Hugh Masekela, the late Busi Mhlongo amongst a few. "Black Coffee" was well received in the SADC region and got enough airplay to win an award for The Best Urban Dance Album at the 2006 MTN SAMA. "Black Coffee"- the album, was created using very basic music-making software. "I don't know how to explain the production stages of my album because all I did was put down the basic ideas that I had, I didn't use any MIDI controllers everything was played with a computer mouse". 2007-2008: Have Another One: By 2007 Black Coffee had become a household name in the South African DJ scene, firing up floors with his tribally infectious, vocal-laced beats. In the same year he released his second studio album titled Have Another One which featured, amongst many Wathula Nje a remix of the late Victor Ntoni's 2004 jazz ballad Thetha (Wathula Nje?) which topped local charts.
Wathula Nje was later released in Europe together with Even Though ft Bantu Soul through a European label Realtone Records on vinyl and digitally. The twelve-track album featured the likes of Siphokazi, the late great Busi Mhlongo, kwaito sensation L'vovo to mention a few, it also introduced a then 17 year old high school producer from Eshowe Kwa Zulu Natal; Culoe De Song who became the second artist to be signed under Soulistic Music. Black Coffee discovered and collaborated with Culoe De Song on an afro-electronic dub titled 100 Zulu warriors. During this period Black Coffee was invited to perform at the Red Bull Music Academy Lounge at the Sonar Festival in Barcelona, where he played alongside the cream of local and international DJs, including Little Louie Vega, Alix Alvarez, Franck Roger, Charles Webster, DJ Spinna and Osunlade.
2008 saw the end of the Soulistic Music, Kalawa Jazzme, Universal Music SA license deal - Soulistic Music respectfully terminated the license deal with Kalawa Jazzme and negotiated a direct license deal with Universal Music for the African territory and retained the name Soulistic Music, retained all the masters and therefore publishing. 2009-2011: Home Brewed: In 2009 Black Coffee dropped his third offering, titled ''Home Brewed'', featuring Ringo Madlingozi, Zonke, Hugh Masekela, Zakes Bantwini and others, and at the South African Music Awards 2010 he scooped two awards in the categories Best Urban Dance Album and Best Male Artist and later in the same year he won Best Produced Album and Best Dance Album at the Metro FM Music Awards and Channel O's Most Talented Male Music Video of the year. With world demand and interest in a Black Coffee performance starting to stand up and shout so to speak, Black Coffee began a new phase of growth between 2009 and 2010 with a string of new Soulistic Music signed releases from Culoe de Song, Tumelo and the great Zakes Bantwini all achieving gold and platinum sales.
In 2011 he was nominated for Best World-wide Act, Africa, India and the Middle East at the MTV Europe Awards . Since launching his label, Soulistic Music, Maphumulo had toured to Sydney, New York, São Paulo, Luanda, Los Angeles and Athens along with fellow label artists. Highlights during 2011 included the launch of 'Africa Rising and its first presentation (at which included a 24 piece orchestra along with a band and featured artists performing Black Coffee's works) at Moses Mabhida Stadium and the four releases on the Soulistic Label including Culoe de Song's "Elevation", Sai & Ribatones "Here and Now", Boddhi Satva's "Invocation" and the label's "Soulistic Music Cuts".
2012-2013: Africa Rising: Black Coffee's Africa Rising DVD and CD (triple CD) sold double platinum in a space of a month in 2012 and later won Best dance album at the 2013 South African Music Awards - all of this happens shortly after Soulistic Music announced a newly signed club DJ - DJ Shimza. 2013 saw Black Coffee continue gracing world stages such as Southport Weekender(UK), Panoroma Bar(Berlin), Circo Loco (Ibiza), Boiler Room and participating in music conferences - from ADE,in Amsterdam RBMA in Johannesburg CTEMF. Amongst a few 2013 notable collaborations are with Micasa Music and Black Motion. 2013 also saw Black Coffee doing more talks on various subjects, which he believes music alone is not enough to address. He became one of the key speakers on his friend Vusi Thembekwayo's tour.
Black Coffee has graced numerous publications including the glossy Destiny Man magazine in November 2013. Black Coffee is also one of the few South African DJ's to headline the international Ultra Festival. Africa Rising: In 2011, Black Coffee's Africa Rising contributed a triumphant chapter to the global house music story and scored some of its most exciting pages within the rising South African sound. Combining the irresistible dancefloor groove of one of Africa's best-loved DJ/producers, Black Coffee, with the staging prowess of one of Africa's most future-facing DJ/producers, Glenn Van Loggerenburg, the Africa Rising show at the Moses Mabhida stadium on 16 December 2011 was an audio-visual presentation that provided and extremely emotional experience for performers and audience alike. Designed against the spectacular architecture of Durban's world-famous stadium, the debut Africa Rising performance featured an exclusive two-hour mix of Black Coffee's biggest tracks, boldly stripped down to accommodate a live band with vocalists and 24-piece orchestra, and highlighted Black Coffee's natural crowd rapport and indisputable courage to grab the moment.